Love Letter to Myself

Credits Indira Cornelio, Alma Uguarte Perez Last Updated 2017-06

This exercise is meant to provide space and time for women human right defenders to think about themselves, their concerns, and the actions they can take to relieve the pressures they face.

This session was developed for, and should be attributed to, the Institute for War & Peace Reporting resource “Cyberwomen: Holistic Digital Security Training Curriculum for Women Human Rights Defenders” under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International CC BY-SA 4.0 License

Materials to Prepare:

  • Paper and Pens
  • Projector and laptop/computer (to show the sentences below)
  • Optional: if you would prefer not to have a projector for this session, you can write out the sentences below on a large piece of flipchart or poster board.

Trainer’s Note

  • Self-care is an essential part of a holistic digital security practice, and is important to consistently reinforce and encourage – it is highly recommended that you distribute exercises related to self-care throughout your training.
  • Depending on the group you are working with (and the amount of time you have for this exercise) consider closing this with a reflection on self-care and why it is important. Ask participants - When was the last time they asked themselves how they felt? Is their activism having an impact in their health? How are they taking care of the most important resources they have for their activism work (themselves)?

Running the Exercise:

**Step 1 ** On a prepared slide or sheet of flipchart paper, show participants the following:

Dear ______,

I have been watching you lately, I know you are having a difficult time with…

I also know you are concerned about…

I just wanted to make sure you knew…

Remember you are great at…

I really think that you should ….

And maybe try doing …… in the coming weeks.


Step 2 | Give one sheet of paper to each participant - ask them to fill in the blank space “Dear ____” with their name, and to complete the remaining sentences that were provided.

Step 3 | Remind participants that they will not have to share their letter with the rest of the group - this is a deeply personal activity.